Positive workplace interaction is something every company should strive to have, as it helps improve employee productivity and company profits. However, due to the isolating nature of working over the internet, it will not be so easy to emulate the same results as working in a physical office.
Thus, encouraging interactions and creating a positive company culture has become so important when working online with employees or virtual assistants. Without doing these, business owners will find themselves with uninspired workers and losing money. If you are looking for help, here are some tips for you.
1. Change How You Lead
Back at the office, you could ensure productivity by personally checking on each individual’s progress while making suggestions as you go. Your very presence and hands-on approach will lead to higher morale and better output. Unfortunately, this will be hard to do when communicating over the internet.
Instead, you will have to change how you lead your team. Make your presence known by checking on your employees and asking for updates from time to time. Do not do this too often, though, as it will make them feel you do not trust them. But do not do it intermittently either because they will think you do not care.
2. Use Communication Apps
Before working online, you and your employees could have face-to-face discussions whenever you needed it. Working together in an office then meant Interactions were immediate and intimate in a way; it helped create positive connections, such as lasting friendships and professional ties.
By using the right apps, you can help encourage the same kind of interactions between you and your workers. Programs like Skype, Zoom, and Slack are great for delegating tasks and communicating with colleagues. Do not limit your employees and instead encourage them to talk with one another by creating work-free, banter-only chat groups.
3. Encourage Openness and Honesty
Asking your employees to be open and honest about themselves is easy when at the office because you can sometimes see what they are going through. And since the two of you work in the same place, you can take timely and appropriate measures to help your workers. This changes once the work shifts over to the internet, as you can no longer see them.
When working online, always let your employees or VAs that you are there to help them and that you are more than willing to listen to them. Use any existing rapport you’ve built to take care of your workers, and in time they will do their best to be open and honest with you. This positive act will endure, even as newer employees join to work with you online.
4. Encourage Work-Life Balance
There is a distinct line that separates home life from work life, a line that is now blurred because people need to work from home due to the pandemic. While the internet makes working remotely easy, it also creates a problem: your employees will find it hard to ‘switch off.’ They will feel the pressure to stay online and remain available at all times, even during their days off.
To counteract this unnecessary pressure, always make it clear to your employees that their time is their own, and they should only be working during their shift. Next, if they have a problem at home, give them the time to sort it out since they are at home and not at the office. Lastly, encourage your workers or VAs to take time off when needed, as it will help them feel appreciated and less likely to burn out.
It is important to remember that creating a positive company culture starts with you, the employer, and the examples you set for your employees. Talk with your workers or VAs, interact with them, and treat them the way you want them to treat you. Together, you will create the best environment for everyone.